Ethiopia Risk Assessment Country Guide

Insurance in Ethiopia

Home to more than 93 million residents, Ethiopia is one of the most populous nations in Africa. It is also one of the oldest and poorest, with a vast multi-ethnic culture and a diverse geography. 

The  UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) advises against all travel to several different areas within Ethiopia, as well as along the country's border. Locations include zones of the Somali region, the Danakil desert area and the Nuer Zone. The FCO also advise against all but essential travel to Jijiga town, parts of the Agnuak zone of the Gambella region and the Gambella Wildlife Reserve due to its proximity to the border with South Sudan. Tensions around the Ethiopian border are high. Security incidents may take place, especially near the Ethiopia-Eritrea border. The threat of kidnapping also increases along all border regions, and the risk of terrorism is also present.

While thousands of foreigners visit Ethiopia each year, the need for comprehensive international insurance is still recommended. The political situation could become volatile, and Western workers and tourists may become the target of attacks or crime. On August 19, 2016, the U.S. Department of State issued a warning against travel to certain regions of Ethiopia due to recent anti-government protests and violence. Embassy services have also been disrupted by unreliable and disrupted telephone and Internet services. 

  • Health
  • Safety & Security
  • Terrorism

Before traveling to Ethiopia, you should discuss any vaccinations or other preventative measures. Only private facilities in the country provide reasonable standards of care, and outside of Addis Ababa conditions are extremely poor. 

In 2014, cases of the measles grew from 6,100 in 2013 to 14,000 confirmed cases with numbers rising in 2015. There have been 9,732 confirmed measles cases as of May 5, 2015. On May 26, 2015, the CDC issued a level 1 watch for those traveling to Ethiopia due to the ongoing measles outbreak and urges travelers to receive necessary vaccinations. 

A recent outbreak of dengue fever was reported in Dire Dawa City. There were over 9,000 suspected cases and 40 confirmed cases. There have been 6 reported cases of Yellow Fever in South Omo Zone, and the World Health Organization implemented a vaccination program in June 2013 to combat this issue. An outbreak of meningococcal meningitis has occurred around Arba Minch and Shebdino.

Polio is also widespread as there were 10 cases reported in 2013 from the Somali Region of Ethiopia. The CDC recommends that all expats receive polio vaccinations prior to traveling to Ethiopia and neighboring countries such as Djibouti, Eritrea, Kenya, Sudan, South Sudan, and Yemen to avoid cross-border transmission.  

Malaria is also common throughout parts of Ethiopia, and Bilzharzia is found in most lakes in the nation. Water-borne illnesses are common, and you should only use boiled and bottled water and avoid ice in drinks.

Clements Worldwide offers GlobalCare® health insurance coverage. This policy includes USD 5 million in health care benefits, and allows you to choose any number of doctors across the world. Clements coverage enables flexible payment plans, choice of deductible and optional War and Terrorism coverage. This extends your policy to include illness or injury caused by an act of war and terrorism.

While in Ethiopia, you may need to travel in order to receive appropriate levels of treatment. A Medical Evacuation and Repatriation insurance policy from Clements covers expenses to transport you to a capable medical facility in case a local medical center isn’t able to provide adequate treatment.

Call us today at +1.202.872.0060 or 800.872.0067 or email request@clements.com to discuss your organization’s travel needs tailored to considerations involved while operating in Ethiopia.

Source: UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Clements Worldwide

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The political climate in Ethiopia is relatively stable. However, protests and demonstrations have taken place in Addis Ababa and other cities. Violent incidents have been reported. You should take care to avoid all large, public gatherings.

Local travel across the country can be dangerous at times. Certain regions may be unstable, and military activity is present in some areas. Insurgent groups affiliated with terrorist organizations have fought with government forces in the past. At times, foreigners have either been targeted or caught nearby. Attacks have been reported on members of non-government organizations.

On October 29, 2016, the United States Department of State issued a warning to travelers to Ethiopia discouraging any non-essential travel to the country. Due to continued political and civil unrest, threats of death, kidnapping, detainment, and property damage, the U.S. Embassy is limited in its ability to provide consular services.

On October 8, 2016, the Government of Ethiopia declared a national state of emergency and later stated that individuals may be detained for activities including communication, media consumption, public gatherings, contact with foreign governments and agencies, and violating curfews. Travelers should avoid destinations through the country including Oromia, Amhara, Somali and Gambella states, southern Ethiopia near the Ethiopian/Kenyan border, and the Ethiopia/Eritrea border.

A Personal Accident insurance policy from Clements protects your organization’s employees and their families' financial stability following an accident, regardless of whether it occurs on the job or during personal time. Coverage begins at USD 100,000 per person.

Driving standards across Ethiopia are poor. Traffic accidents occur frequently, and many incidents result in fatalities. Drivers involved in car accidents may be subject to severe penalties, like custodial sentences and fines. If you are involved in  or witness an accident, you should remain near your vehicle and call police immediately. 

Clements offers international car insurance, which includes Physical Damage, Third Party Liability, and Excess Liability coverage. With flexible deductible options and fast claims processing, your policy will provide coverage for your vehicle fleet whether it’s on the road, parked or transported abroad.

An optional Political Violence extension is also recommended, which broadens the coverage to include strikes, riots, malicious damage, sabotage, war, terrorism or civil unrest.

Call us today at +1.202.872.0060 or 800.872.0067 or email request@clements.com to discuss your organization’s travel needs tailored to considerations involved while operating in Ethiopia.

Source: UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Clements Worldwide

Contact a Clements Representative for Insurance Solutions

There is a high threat of kidnapping and terrorism in Ethiopia. Attacks could target places visited by foreigners and expats, and you should remain vigilant in crowded locations like hotels, restaurants, bars and sporting events. 

Al-Shabaab, a terrorist organization based in Somalia, is a legitimate concern across all of eastern Africa. The group has threatened countries with a military presence in Somalia, and carried out an attack in Uganda in 2010 related to this. Ethiopia has maintained a military presence in Somalia recently.

In October 2013, a bomb blast in Addis Ababa resulted in two deaths. In November of that year, the National Intelligence and Security Service and Federal Police Joint Anti-Terrorism Task Force announced that they had found evidence of terrorist groups planning to attack Addis Ababa and other parts of the country.

A War and Terrorism insurance policy from Clements offers the right coverage against the risks of civil unrest, war, riots, looting and acts of terrorism.

Ethiopia also poses a high risk of kidnapping. This is especially true in the Somali region of the nation, and along border areas with other countries. A Kidnap and Ransom insurance policy from Clements ensures financial assistance following a kidnapping, such as independent investigations, negotiations and the arrangement and delivery of funds.

Call us today at +1.202.872.0060 or 800.872.0067 or email request@clements.com to discuss your organization’s travel needs tailored to considerations involved while operating in Ethiopia.

Source: UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Clements Worldwide

Contact a Clements Representative for Insurance Solutions